Can’t Sleep, Fixing Bikes!

So on Wednesday night I went a little overboard with swapping bits & pieces around between Bruiser, Eric & Scarlet.

I started with the tank mount – of the three bikes, only Bruiser had one.
I looked at Scarlet and decided it should be fitted on her tank.

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Removed the mounting bolt and rubber from Bruiser easily enough.

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Fitting it on Scarlet was straightforward enough..

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Next I compared the instrument clusters

Here’s the one Scarlet came with. It says Honda on the back but it’s not from the right model.

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Bruiser’s was in the best condition overall,

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And here’s the one I bought for Eric originally. I liked the fact that some of the writing was still visible on this one.

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So naturally I decided to take everything apart and see what could be swapped around. As I’d hoped, the covers for the lights were removable and could be swapped.

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Since I’d already removed the ignition switches, the switch with matching locks from Bruiser went into back into the instrument cluster to be mounted on Scarlet.

Next I removed the headlight housing from Scarlet, so I could get to the headlight mounting bracket.

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There were some extra holes drilled in the mounting bracket for the instrument cluster, so I decided to swap it with Eric’s.

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This meant removing the handlebars.

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Eric’s mounting bracket was in much better shape, so off it came!

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I compared all four handlebar mounting brackets and all eight mounting screws,  then selected the best ones to put back on Scarlet.

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While looking at the wiring for the headlights and instrument cluster on Scarlet, I found an adaptor cable that looked a bit odd.

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After removing it, I realised that it was from the odd instrument cluster

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It went with the collection of parts from that cluster. On further inspection, I found that the back of this instrument cluster was marked “Honda CB400T”.

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I’d already removed Bruiser’s headlight to remove his instrument cluster, so I decided to remove the headlight cover and compare with the one on the spare headlight and the one from Scarlet.

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I noticed the one from Scarlet looked a bit odd compared with the other ones. A close look at the back told me exactly why – it was from a Suzuki!

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The better of the two Honda ones was put aside to mount on Scarlet.

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As I’d half-dismantled the headlights by this point, I checked the chrome outer rings on them.

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For some reason I decided it would be a good idea to completely dismantle the headlights and swap the chrome outer rings over instead of just using the better headlight.

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I did end up with one headlight that was significantly less rusty than the other, so I guess it was worth it!

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I mounted the rebuilt instrument cluster on Scarlet and swapped the tank strap over to match the ignition switch.

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My phone battery was too flat to keep taking photos by this point.

I ended up installing Scarlet’s front indicators and headlight, swapping the left switch/clutch lever assembly with Bruiser’s as it was the only one that had the correct wiring for the headlight, finding it was missing the clutch switch, breaking another clutch switch trying to remove it from the original switch assembly, dismantling the bottom half of the broken switch assembly and rebuilding it into the third one and finding that  Scarlet’s wiring loom seems to be missing at least one bullet connector so the lights still don’t work.

Scarlet’s almost a complete bike now though, more on that tomorrow!

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Tensioning Eric’s Clutch

Inspired by replacing Jack’s clutch lever, I picked up a clutch tensioning screw for Eric while visiting the local bike wreckers today.

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So of course, I had to fit it as soon as I got home.
Here’s the clutch lever as it looked when I started.

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Under the cover, you can see there seems to be something missing.

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Eased the clutch cable out.

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Screwed the clutch cable tensioner in, being careful to line up the slots so the cable would go in easily.

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Popped the cable back in easily enough.

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I then backed off the inner screw and tightened the locknut. This took a bit of fiddling!

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Finally, I popped the cover back on.

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Now it’s a race to see what arrives first – Eric’s blue cousin that I bought this week, or the last of the parts I ordered from Japan. My money’s on the blue one!

More on that when one or the other arrives…

Jack Fell Down And Broke His – Clutch Lever?

So having dropped Jack on Saturday and knowing I had broken his clutch lever and bent the gear shift lever, I ordered a replacement clutch lever on Monday. It arrived today!

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Here’s the previous one looking somewhat mistreated.

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That gear shift lever shouldn’t be curved either. I’ll fix this one another day!

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The old lever and its replacement

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Removing the lever was easy – slide the rubber cover off, remove the bolt holding it in, then loosen off the cable tensioning screw and locking nut.

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Replaced already!

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Pop the bolt back in, tighten up the tensioning screw and locknut again and my hand no longer slips off the end of the clutch lever!

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I also have a nifty souvenir from my first solo road trip as a rider, in the form of a powder-coated metal keyhole-shaped trinket!

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Or perhaps it’s a comma or apostrophe, depending on which angle I look at it from?

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I like apostrophes – let’s go with that.

First Solo Road Trip – Part Two of Two – At Last the Ramen!

So on Saturday evening, I had at last found the fabled Rising Sun Workshop after getting horribly lost in Sydney traffic.

After placing my helmet on the provided shelf near the counter, hanging up my jacket on the coat rack provided and dumping my backpack on the bench seat below it, I told the barista I’d ridden from Canberra (I have now figured out this must have been Daniel – sorry guys, I was exhausted!). I then asked for a latte and a bowl of The Dark Ramen and uttered the weekend’s secret phrase “Throw me a freakin’ bone here!”

While I was waiting for my ramen, Adrian came over (possibly he brought my coffee? It’s all a bit hazy before the caffeine kicked in) and introduced himself. He seemed a little stunned that I’d heard of the place and that I’d ridden from Canberra to check it out for myself. He told me a little about the Kickstarter campaign, the pop-up noodle house and that they had just got an extension for the pop-up until September, whioch should see them through until the move to their new (hopefully permanent) location about a block away. Adrian mentioned that one of their backers was also from Canberra and was keen to come for one of their workshops. I mentioned my blog and that I’d heard of the place from a review on a food blog first before seeing my friends posting about coming in for coffee and cake on Facebook. I promised him I’d put it on my blog and mention my visit on the 2fiftycc.com forums to spread the word. He offered to give me a tour of the workshop section after I’d finished my meal.

Nick then arrived with my ramen and warned me that the bone would be hot.
He also recommended tasting the marrow bone on its own first, then scooping the rest of it into the broth. The marrow bone was the weekend’s special obtainable only by uttering the secret phrase earlier.

The Dark Ramen shortly after it arrived – minus the mushroom I’d eaten because I was too hungry to remember that social media etiquette requires one to post a photo of food before eating it!

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Nick’s recommendation was absolutely spot on – the ramen was absolutely amazing!

After thanking the boys for the excellent ramen and settling the bill, I followed Adrian into the workshop area.

First up – the Harley-Davidson 2014 48 Sportster 1200cc that RSW members can help work on, donated by Harley-Davidson as part of their partnership with RSW. Adrian told me that this partnership also allowed the temporary pop-up premises to become a reality.

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A beautiful Honda belonging to a member.

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The awesome monkey mural on the wall by a local tattoo artist and supporter.

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A better view of one of the work bays (and that Honda again!)

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And finally Adrian’s Yamaha. which looks pretty damn spiffy too!

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I completely forgot to get a poster of the Cafe Racer at the entrance or the Rising Sun Oil Company sign behind the noodle bar. Next time!

As I was fully intending to stop by before the ride home the next day, I figured I’d just do it later. Not expecting any more misadventure, I rode on to St Peters and the housewarming party.

Arriving in St Peters, I foolishly parallel-parked Jack sidestand-side-down on a slope while finding the flat to arrange for my friends to open the garage door. I kept my backpack on instead of leaving it in the flat as suggested, came out to move Jack and promptly fell over sideways from a combination of exhaustion and gravity!

Fortunately neither Jack nor I were seriously harmed, although I did manage to snap off the end of the clutch lever and bend the gear lever. I picked Jack up, parked and proceeded to join the party. Being on my P’s, I kept the drinking to a responsible level as I knew I’d have to ride home to Canberra on Sunday!

Sorry to the Rising Sun guys for not coming back on the Sunday, I’ll come for another visit next time I’m in Sydney!

Thankfully, the ride home was uneventful apart from rain on the way out of Sydney and getting stuck on the toll part of the M5 Southbound towards the Hume Highway.